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Is Comcast Blocking Your Mail?

I am a Comcast Business internet customer. Comcast internet customers may not be aware that Comcast uses a blacklist of IP (internet provider) addresses. IP addresses are sometimes shared with many email producers. Some are legitimate and some are spammers. In the name of security, both legitimate users and spammers that share those IP addresses may be blocked by Comcast, even if it's mail you want or subscribe to. It would be as if someone from Somersworth (03878) committed mail fraud and the postmaster decided that all mail originating from 03878 would be "just thrown in the trash" without the knowledge of any of the intended recipients.

Yet Another One Of Our Freedoms In Jeopardy

My web site, as does most, uses 'alias' email addresses (ray@tanplusforhealth.com, sales@tanplusforhealth.com,etc.) I have those email messages redirected to my Comcast address and my email management program. My website URL (www.tanplusforhealth.com) has a shared IP address, through my website's hosting company, with possibly hundreds of other users. Comcast has put that address on its blacklist since some of these shared users may be producing spam. I do not send mailings from that address. But, since it is blacklisted I cannot receive mail that I have had redirected from that address. Granted, most of the email messages I receive is spam and funneled right to my trash, but I also receive questions from current and potential customers, sales invoices, vendors, publications, etc.

Nevertheless, shouldn't it be my decision Not Comcast's as to what mail I want or don't want? After all, isn't that one of the services that I am paying Comcast every month for?

I have indicated through Comcast account preferences to "allow all mail". Email filters are also "off". If you use a blacklisted IP address, you have to practically beg Comcast, through non-direct channels to remove the block. You cannot talk to a tech by phone. Comcast customers are not aware that information they have subscribed to and may want, or even email from friends and relatives may not get through because Comcast is playing "God" with their mail and has blacklisted certain IP addresses.

Over the past two months I have had to have Comcast unblock my mail 26 times, that's 26 partial days of blocked mail. I have to complete an online form each time to request Comcast to unblock my mail. The response from Comcast is automated:

Thank you for contacting Comcast Customer Security Assurance. We have received and reviewed your RBL removal request. Please do not reply to this message. The IP you previously provided has been removed from the Comcast.net blocklist.

Our filters have determined that email from the IP you submitted was blocked because it sent email to the Comcast domain with patterns characteristics of spam. Mail servers are typically shared by many users so it may be the case that another party using your mail server has sent spam, even if you have not.

Sincerely, Comcast Customer Security Assurance

My comments to Comcast each time is a request to speak with a supervisor. A few weeks ago, I filed a formal complaint with the FCC (Federal Communications Commission). But, it seems the FCC has bigger issues to investigate with Comcast...

Comcast Under Federal Investigation

According to an article from the Associated Press (4/08)- Comcast Corp is under federal investigation for interfering with the traffic of its Internet subscribers. The FCC is investigating complaints from consumer groups about Comcast's treatment of file-sharing traffic, and the commission chairman has said he's "pleased" that the company is now moving to end its practice of stifling file-sharing. File sharing is mainly used to illegally swap copyright works like movies, but it's also emerging as a cheap way to distribute legal video.

From The Philadelphia Inquirer Comcast's Big Push To Repair Its Image (4/08 by Bob Fernandez) - Under siege for customer-service woes detailed on Comcastmustdie.com and other blogs, the Philadelphia cable giant has gone on the offensive, trawling the Internet for Comcast chatter. Frank Eliason, a Comcast Corp. manager in Center City has a very specific assignment: If someone has a Comcast problem and is talking about it online, he contacts that person and offers help. If Eliason thinks it's an emergency that could spiral into unpleasantness, like an expletive-loaded blog bomb, he gets on the phone and cuts through the corporate red tape.

Comcast is "waking up to the fact that a bad rap in the social-networking space could spread like crazy," said Shel Holtz, a public-relations consultant in the San Francisco area. "If consumers are talking to each other about your brand, you should participate in that conversation and have a good story to tell." The story in this case is more like a horror flick on Comcast's FEARnet channel. Comcast has had a public-relations nightmare with Comcastmustdie.com, launched in October by Advertising Age columnist Bob Garfield.

In another widely publicized incident in August, 76-year-old Mona Shaw of Virginia busted up a Comcast office with a hammer because her phone hadn't worked for six days. Moreover, the company with 24 million pay-TV subscribers ranks near the bottom of customer satisfaction lists by leading consumer-research firm J.D. Power and other organizations. In the February issue of Consumer Reports, Comcast ranked ninth in a summary table of 10 big telecom companies. It was sandwiched between Time Warner Cable, at No. 8, and last-place Charter Communications Inc. Saying it will improve the dismal rankings.

If I Am So Unhappy With Comcast Why Don't I Switch?

The truth is, I would switch internet providers in a heartbeat but, for now, Comcast is the only high speed internet provider available in my area. For several years, Verizon has promised that DSL would be available but has not followed through. FairPoint Communications has recently bought out Verizon and expects to make DSL available in the coming months. Until then, I have little choice but to struggle day by day with the arrogant conglomerate self-proclaimed as "Comcast Business Solutions". And you thought only the federal government was infringing on our freedoms.


Disclaimer

Tanning & Natural Health News is a publication of Tan Plus /Essentials Of Life, Barclay Square, 350 Route 108, Somersworth, NH. This publication is designed for educational purposes only and is not intended to be presented as medical advice. Product statements made have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration.


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